Mobile Marketing, the best way for you to reach out to your customers

Image courtesy of miniyo73 at Flickr.com

The mobile era is no longer a future prediction, it is happening right now. Nowadays, at least 40% of user’s internet time is spent on mobile devices, exceeding desktop internet access not only in the U.S. but also in many developing countries. This is why marketers need to keep tabs on the opportunities of reaching their audiences via mobile and how to make their mobile sites and presences visible and accessible.

Mobile marketing can be defined as the way advertisers connect to consumers through mobile devices and networks. Mobile devices include phones, media devices, portable gaming consoles, tablet computers and those devices which function as all of the above. This way of doing digital marketing offers a unique and tailored mobile ad option, since the ad format, customization and style may vary depending on the social media platform, website and/or app.

Brands should adapt their efforts to this platform from both the marketing and technical standpoints. Optimizing websites for mobile according to the usage advantages of each type of device may help marketers to ensure positive experiences which directly correlates with buying behavior. It is estimated that by 2020, user experience will be the main differentiator among brands, surpassing pricing and product nuances.

Who uses mobile marketing?

Recently more companies are engaging with mobile marketing as mobile devices become increasingly common. Companies like Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, CBS, The New York Times, ESP, Target, P&G and Coca-Cola- to mention a few, are connecting with their customers through mobile marketing campaigns, user-friendly apps or unexpected pop-up ads.

By using mobile marketing businesses can get in front of customers on the devices they use the most: their smartphones and tablets. Using different types of mobile technologies like text messages (SMS), multimedia messages (MMS), push notifications, geolocation among others, mobile marketing lets businesses reach out to customers on devices that they take everywhere they go.

Why to use it?

According to recent surveys about retail traffic, mobile traffic represents 50% of all U.S. retail traffic. This kind of information simply gives you a big hint on how why your business needs a mobile marketing strategy just as it needs to have Wi-Fi access. Here are a few reasons why your company should use mobile marketing:

Affordability: One of the easiest and most affordable ways to improve a company’s relationship with their customers and making them feel more personally engaged with the brand, is with SMS (text) marketing. There are basic programs from companies such as TextMarks, that allow them to reach their customers quickly and efficiently. These programs typically start at about $50 a month and offer options such as data reporting and analytics, automatic responses, expansion capabilities, and the ability to integrate with your other mobile marketing tools as you develop them.

Direct and instant: Mobile marketing is not only affordable, it also allows your company to communicate directly with customers, No matter if they are jogging, watching TV or out, mobile marketing gives you a direct, personal path to them and their full attention in real time everywhere.

Personalized Customer Management: Through Mobile Marketing you can engage customers in the moment encouraging them to contribute to surveys, or remind them of an ongoing sale of your products in their area or wherever they may be. You can also obtain feedback immediately, and you can customize your marketing plans to engage your customers even more.

Sales Tracking: Tracking on site and in app activity lets you to capture data to keep segmentation profiles updated, confirming Lifetime Value records, and assisting with cross-selling for other products. You need to have a tracking system to monitor your effectiveness in reaching your target market. Usually mobile device users send their feedback immediately, so you can easily track your conversion rates and understand your market better.

Types of Mobile Marketing Strategies

There are many mobile marketing strategies to try. The kind that works best for your business will depend on your industry, budget, and target audience. Listed below you can find some of them:

App-based marketing: Users spend 80% of their time engaged with apps (especially games). You don’t have to create an app yourself to get customers’ attention. Services like Google AdMob help advertisers create mobile ads that appear within third-party mobile apps.

Location-based marketing: Location-based mobile ads are those that appear on mobile devices according to a user’s location relative to a specific area or business. If some advertisers only want their mobile ads to pop up on mobile devices when users are within a 1-mile radius of their business.

Image courtesy of Allanah King at Flickr.com

QR codes: QR Codes have been widely used in Japan and Europe in recent years, but are only now starting to gain use in the U.S. QR codes are scanned by users with their mobile devices. Once the QR Code is scanned using the device’s camera it is translated into actionable information, such as a text message or mobile web page. QR codes have an element of mystery to them, since users who scan them don’t always know exactly where it will take them.

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.